Writing golden hours – those hours in a day when you are most productive, feel the best and do your best work. My hours used to be around or after midnight. I could write without interruption and ideas seem to flow.
Not anymore. Most things I write after midnight need to be edited so badly the next morning there’s no point in even attempting to string a sentence together. My life has changed and the demands on my time has changed to the point that after midnight I’m so sleepy I couldn’t write my way out of a paper bag.
Outside influences can affect your golden hours and you may need to adjust them. For some writers, they still need to figure out their golden time.
Figuring out your golden time starts with figuring out when you feel good. What time of day most inspires you? When do you feel fresh and ready to tackle anything that comes your way? That’s a good time to schedule your writing. Your golden hours will help you produce more work at a better quality. You’re not forcing yourself to do it, you’re not trying to accomplish the task while juggling dinner and dog walking, you are just writing. This can be an adjustment for some people who have scheduled their writing hours to meet the demands of other obligations, but if it’s possible, rearranging your schedule may be your breakthrough.
The same thing with changing your golden hours. It took a wasted night and a truly abysmal article for me to wake up to the fact that I was no longer a post-midnight writer. It was a sad discovery as college term papers and deadline driven excellence had been the norm for that time. Then kids and meetings and running the ‘business’ of writing changed my day’s start times and apparently end time. Now mornings are where I’m most productive – sad but true, waking up and going straight into the office is the best way to start my day. All my cool vampire-like tendencies have melted away to a writer that works during business hours – yuck.
Figure out what works for you. Many writers keep their own hours that may not be within the realm of normal business hours and besides doing interviews and conducting the business end of the work, they work less conventional hours much to their delight. Don’t feel like you HAVE TO work a certain schedule because it’s what’s expected of you, that’s one of the great aspects of being a freelancer – you get to make the rules.
What are your writing hours? Do you think it’s time to change your golden hours? Why?
Tereece, what a great article! I was just thinking about that this past week…and I sound a lot like you! I used to be able to stay up very late and be really productive, but for some reason now my mornings are much more productive. This article encourages me to take better advantage of my best writing time, even if it isn’t now what it used to be!